New Beginnings With the Year of the Rat
Because it’s the first of the 12 zodiacs, the Year of the Rat is seen as a time of beginnings and renewals. That brings us hope, especially paired with the recent positive development in the U.S.-China trade war.
What is Good Government, and Why Is It So Rare and Precious?
Navigating between the despotic extreme of authoritarianism and the unbridled liberty of anarchism is the challenge of society in its quest for good government. A new book looks at the choices facing policymakers to achieve the proper balance and to improve the prospects of those countries outside the “narrow corridor” of effective governance that lies between those extremes.
Bitcoin Has Its Best Start to a Year Since 2012
Among the biggest contributors to the bitcoin rally is the hope that 2020 could finally see institutional investors move into the digital field en masse, prompted by growing client demand and more attractive ways to get exposure.
A Year of Living Less Dangerously
The publication this week of the U.S. — China trade deal and the final macro numbers for 2019 should set the stage for healthy economic performance and stronger market sentiment in China in 2020, but the risk of a return to tense relations between Washington and Beijing looms over 2021 and beyond.
Is It Time to Worry About Inflation?
The substantial economic calendar features inflation reports and housing, but also includes Michigan sentiment, the Fed’s Beige Book, and NFIB sentiment survey. We will also get the first earnings reports for the Q4 season.
The Us Continues to Look Attractive, Looking Backward and Forward
2019 was a triumphant year for the US large cap equity market, with the S&P500 index up 31% on a total return basis. The resolution of two major concerns in the year, namely the US Fed being too aggressive on rate hikes, and the US/China trade relationship hanging in a total impasse, drove the market higher, particularly in 1st and 4th quarter.
The Ten Surprises of 2020
The Ten Surprises of 2019 worked out plenty well. While we don't go through this process with the objective of getting a high score, knowing that you have been able to anticipate some of the generally unexpected events that are going to influence the financial markets during the coming year is gratifying.
The 2020-2024 EM Fixed Income Outlook
Following another year of strong returns, Emerging Markets (EM) fixed income has outperformed developed bond markets by a significant margin over the past four years. The outperformance is likely to continue in 2020, because EM fixed income remains attractively priced both in absolute terms and relative to bonds in developed markets as well as under-owned and well-supported by an improving fundamental backdrop.
The Inequality Debate We Need
The scientific evidence increasingly indicates that the world may soon reach a point of no return regarding climate change. So, rather than worrying almost exclusively about economic and political inequality, rich-country citizens need to start thinking about how to deal with global energy inequality before it’s too late.
America Remains the Land of Opportunity. For Everything Else, There's Gold
I’m optimistic that the U.S. will stand as a beacon of freedom and opportunity in the 2020s and beyond, but with more and more younger Americans supporting socialism over capitalism, I believe it prudent to proceed with caution. That means making sure you’re holding some gold in your portfolio.